We have all received packets from Local 17 that seek to confuse and demoralize us with innuendo and spin. Here are the facts.
DOES "TEA" STILL EXIST?
ABSOLUTELY!! The group of King County Employees known as "TEA" does exist, only our name may have to be changed.
Due to a Washington State administrative technicality, Local 17 may have absconded with our name. We say "may have" because the law (big surprise here) is unclear. It’s been more than three years since we came into existence, and we are still here in spite of the County's and Local 17's efforts to the contrary.
We’re still 200-plus strong, and we’re getting stronger all the time! We’ve managed to get King County’s and Local 17’s attention; now it’s up to Local 17 to stop intervening to get their COLA’s and other benefits.
IFPTE Local 17 Application for Membership card- WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
If you sign an IFPTE Local 17 Application for Membership card, you are stating you want Local 17 to be your bargaining representative. This is NOT a showing of interest card. This does NOT allow you the opportunity to vote for non-representation. This IS your vote. If you want the opportunity to choose between TEA, Local 17 or no representation, DO NOT sign the IFPTE Local 17 Application for Membership card.
What is Local 17's Problem With TEA?
Simple. First of all, we are a threat to them and their cozy relationship with the County. Local 17 is afraid of having similar jobs represented by an alternative (TEA) because of the high level of dissatisfaction within their ranks. Numerous Local 17 members have told us that they are more afraid of their union than they are of the County. There is also a widespread feeling in Local 17 that the union is milking them for their dues and doing nothing in return. Local 17 is afraid that a viable alternative-TEA- will lead to defections.
Local 17 is also trying to blame TEA for the consequences of some pretty incredible blunders on their part. Their first blunder was when they let the County talk them into joining with the County in opposition to TEA. Their next blunder was in underestimating us. Their third blunder was not foreseeing legal consequences. And their final blunder was in thinking that the County was in their corner - Local 17 is discovering that the cozy place in their relationship with the County is reserved for the County.
The biggest consequence of their blunders is that the COLA for Local 17 members is being withheld by the County. They do not want to admit to their members that they are at fault so they are trying to blame TEA.
An Open Letter to TEA -- September 24, 1998
I just wanted to drop a note to you about this "seniority" issue. Ray Goforth sent us all letters saying we should join his organization so we can begin "accruing" seniority as good union members and he seems to think this should be an incentive to join his union. Well, I say to Mr. Goforth, that as a former Contract Worker, I’ve gone to court to get credit for every one of the 12 years I’ve worked for King County and I am not about to sacrifice any of that time so that one of your dues paying members can take my place.
I’ve paid my dues…..
[Signed] Wyatt Wood, CIP
September 28 Party --
-- Was canceled. Stay tuned for updates. But much thanks to Alex Marin for helping with arrangements.